An Ingham County, Michigan judge ruled that the state’s ban against gay marriage does not prevent public employers from providing health insurance to partners of gay employees.
Circuit Judge Joyce Draganchuk says health care benefits are benefits of employment, not marriage.
Deborah LaBelle, an attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan, says the ruling affirms that Michigan voters never intended to take health insurance away from families.
A constitutional amendment approved by voters last year made the union between a man and a woman the only agreement recognized as a marriage or similar union for any purpose.
Those last six words led to debate over whether the amendment barred universities and governments from giving benefits to same-sex partners of gay employees.
Copyright 2005 Associated Press.
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